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even to the human family; we see not why, besides comprehending the whole race of man, it should not also embrace all the fallen angels without exception. So absurd in itself, and so subversive in its tendency of the whole gospel economy, is the supposition we have thus endeavoured to overthrow.
8. But let us close our proof with a direct appeal to the testimony of the divine word.
What say the scriptures? The arguments already adduced, it is not doubted, are scriptural arguments. They are founded on views of the divine character, the covenant of grace, and the Saviour's work, which are taken from the word of God. But, in advancing them, we may be said rather to be 'reasoning out of the scriptures,' than to be appealing directly to the scriptures themselves. The former line of procedure serves to show the harmony of our doctrine with the system of revealed truth at large: the latter calls the attention to individual texts which have a direct bearing on the subject, and which, by confining ourselves to the other, would be in danger of being overlooked. We shall give a specimen of the texts which might easily be marshalled in overpowering numbers, and this we shall do in the order of the books of scripture in which they occur.
We pass over the old testament writings, with one remark of a general kind, namely, that they everywhere suppose and recognize a distinction between the people of God or the Israelites, and the Gentiles or the nations of the world: and that the benefits of the sacrificial rite, which prefigured the
atonement of Christ, were exclusively limited to those who are included under the former description. This distinction is incorporated in the very first intimation given to man of the divine Victim, an intimation in which the seed of the serpent and the Seed of the woman are placed in striking and instructive antithesis; nor is it ever afterwards suffered to drop out of sight. We wait not to advert, in particular, to such expressions as these, 'For the transgression of my people was he stricken,' 'He bare the sins of many but proceed to the writings of the new testament, to which we principally make appeal in this department of our argument.
Let the reader candidly peruse these words 'Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I NEVER KNEW YOU: depart from me ye that work iniquity.' Here a broad line of distinction is drawn between two classes of the human family, with respect to one of which the Saviour makes the appalling affirmation, 'I never knew you.' The import of the words, according to scripture usage, it is by no means difficult to ascertain. The doctrine of the Saviour's omniscience precludes the idea that simple knowledge
11 Matt. vii. 21-23.
is all that is designed. The antagonist assertions, 'You only have I known of all the families of the earth,' and 'The Lord knoweth them that are his,'12 leave us no room to hesitate. The reference can only be to a special saving cognizance, of which some are the objects, and others not. But with what shadow of plausibility can such knowledge be denied, with regard to any for whom Jesus suffered, whose sins he actually bore in his own body on the tree? Are there any such whom he never knew?
Take another testimony from the same evangelist: -At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes.'13 It is here affirmed, as plainly as language can do it, that there are some of mankind from whom the saving benefits of Christ's kingdom are 'hid.' Now, we are not concerned what interpretation is put upon this phrase. That it imports some awful privation in the matter of the soul's eternal interests, cannot be denied. What we have to do with is this, whether Christ's being said to have hid these things from the wise and prudent, can be made to comport or agree with his having procured these very things for the same individuals by his death. Can it be honouring to 'the only wise God, our Saviour,' to suppose in his conduct so glaring a contradiction, as that of first purchasing, at the expense of his own precious blood, saving bene
fits for men, and then deliberately hiding these purchased benefits from those for whom they were thus expensively provided? Take what view you will of the hiding from the wise and prudent, it will be found to be incompatible with the persons in question ever having been interested in the atonement of Christ.
In the following passages, the distinction made between the sheep and the goats or the wolves, for the former of whom only Christ is said to lay down his life, ought to be carefully marked and duly weighed:-'I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for THE SHEEP. I lay down my life for THE SHEEP. But ye believe not, because ye are not of MY SHEEP, as I said unto you. My SHEEP hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: and I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish, neither shall any pluck them out of my hand.'" Besides the restriction of Christ's laying down his life,—that is, his atonement,—to the sheep, the identity of those for whom he laid down his life and those to whom is given eternal life so that they shall never perish, is deserving of particular notice.
The singularly decided passage in our Lord's intercessory prayer has already been commented on, and here requires only to be noted:-'I pray not for the world but for them which thou hast given me. For their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. Father, I will that they also whom thou hast given me be with me where I am.'1
14 John x. 11, 15, 26, 27, 28.
15 John xvii. 9, 19, 24.
Paul says, 'But God commended his love towards us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.' We know not how it could be more clearly taught that those for whom Christ died are justified by his blood and delivered from the wrath to come; but this cannot be affirmed of all. To the same purpose this apostle gives utterance to the challenge, 'Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died.' The death of Christ is thus supposed to be the best possible security against condemnation: none for whom Christ died can ever be exposed to the curse; but there are some on whom the curse will press for ever: of course it cannot be said that for such Christ died.
The next text we adduce is this: "For he hath made him to be sin for us who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.'' It will be allowed, that by Christ being made sin, is meant his suffering for our atonement. But the object of his being made sin is, that those for whom he is so made, might be made the righteousness of God in him. These are of the same extent, as regards the persons interested in them. They are, in fact, the very same persons for whom he was made sin, and who are, in consequence, made the righteousness of God in him. Now, that all are not made the
16 Rom. v. 8, 9.
17 2 Cor. v. 21.